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'The Goldbergs' fan recap: Geek love

Season 2 | Episode 12 | “Cowboys Country” | Aired Feb 11, 2015

Forbidden love, football drama, and a beautiful Green Lantern ring—the latest episode of The Goldbergs is filled with love and longing.

Adam had recently discovered that he is a “late bloomer” and fears that his girlfriend Dana may not think he is man enough for her. Adam’s fears only become more apparent when the older Anthony Balsamo asks Dana to attend a party at the water tower. Adam takes matters into his own hands; he tries his hand at shaving and gives “Buns of Steel” a spin.

Barry and Lainey are in new-relationship bliss, so of course it is time to bring in the parents. Lainey’s dad would like to meet Barry’s dad. To help ease the awkwardness, Lainey comes up with the idea for the pair to meet while watching the Eagles-Cowboys game. After some convincing, Barry gets Murray to agree to leave his chair to watch the game somewhere else. Everything seems to be going well until the Goldbergs realize they have entered Cowboys Country!

After getting some advice from Pops and Erica, Adam decides he needs to step up this game. Cue Nana’s diamond ring, because his Green Lantern ring is too nerdy, which Adam takes from Beverly’s room to give to Dana. Before Dana can even enjoy the ring on her finger, Beverly marches into the school and demands that ring back. Feeling her favorite child slipping through her fingers, Beverly grounds Adam so he cannot go to the water-tower party and forbids him from seeing Dana.

Back in Cowboys Country, Murray agrees to stay for one quarter of the game. Though it does not last long, Murray is soon ousted as an Eagles fan. Murray makes some good points: He lives in Philadelphia so of course he is an Eagles fan and damn proud of it. After getting in a wee bit of a heated debate over which one is “America’s team” (this maybe because I am personally from Philadelphia but heck yeah, the Eagles should be America’s team), Murray and Barry “caw-caw” home.

A grounded and heartbroken Adam follows his heart and advice from his sister and sneaks out of the house to find Dana and the water-tower party. To prove that he is enough man for Dana (I just want to make it clear that Dana has never questioned Adam’s manliness), Adam climbs the water tower to put their love on display. Unfortunately, it does not turn out as expected …


Another thing that does not turn out as expected: Adam’s descent from the water tower. Due to his fear of heights, the fire department is called to help Adam down.

Murray tries to explain to Barry that Eagles fans and Cowboys fans just don’t mix, but Barry sees people, not teams. Barry even shocks his father by saying that he would choose Lainey over the Eagles. Murray agrees to give it a go one more time. Lainey’s dad will agree to look past the football drama if Murray states that the Cowboys are actually “America’s team.” Unable to see his father go through that kind of pain, Barry declares that the Cowboys suck.

Beverly finds Adam walking home alone and humiliated. Adam is now convinced that Dana will never want to see him again. Though it is hard for Beverly to admit, Adam is growing up and becoming a man. Though he may not be able to see it, he will be a grown-up before he knows it. Beverly drives Adam to Dana’s house so the two can make up. Dana admits that she doesn’t want to hang out with the older kids; she would much rather play video games with Adam. Later on at school, Adam gifts Dana with his Green Lantern ring. Aw, geek love!

Just when Barry thinks he has lost Lainey forever, she shows up at his door. Nothing brings two teenagers together faster than a disapproving father. Forbidden love is the best kind of love.

Standout performance of the episode goes to Murray Goldberg, who proved that being a good dad trumps rooting for your favorite sports team!

The Goldbergs airs Wednesdays at 8:30/7:30C on ABC.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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